Norma Lopez murder trial: Jury recommends death penalty in Moreno Valley case

MORENO VALLEY, Calif. (KABC) -- A jury is recommending the death penalty for a 42-year-old man found guilty of first-degree murder in the 2010 slaying of Moreno Valley teenager Norma Lopez.

The jury's decision for Jesse Torres was announced on Wednesday afternoon. Last week Torres was found guilty of first-degree murder with a special circumstance of murder during the commission of a kidnapping.

Lopez was walking home from summer classes at Valley View High School on July 15, 2010 when she just disappeared. Her body was found five days later in a field about three miles away.

"The entire city was on edge because a child was kidnapped and murdered, and we didn't have answers," Bianco said.

The prosecution says DNA on one of her earrings led them to Torres, who lived near the route Lopez would take to walk home from school. The prosecution says Torres was "waiting, watching and lusting."

After finding him guilty, the jury had the option of execution or life in prison without the possibility of parole.
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